What Are the Best Shoes for CrossFit?


It’s important to have comfortable and stable shoes to handle everything from weightlifting to running to balance and agility drills. Here are the good, bad, and best things to look for in a CrossFit shoe.

Bad: “Running shoes”

  • Soft, cushiony foam between your foot and the ground. This causes an unstable foundation for weightlifting and balance and agility movements.  Raising your foot higher off the ground also increases the chance of the foam sole catching on something and rolling your ankle, and makes the ankle sprain worse because of more leverage.
  • Heel to toe drop.  This is when the heel of the shoe is higher than the toe.  It changes the way you walk/run, encouraging heel-strike, and makes it more difficult to run with good technique.

Good: “Cross Training shoes”

  • Firm, stable sole.  Provides a stable foundation for lifting, balance, and agility.
  • Little to no heel to toe drop. Puts your foot closer to its natural alignment with the ground. 

Best: “Minimal / Barefoot style shoes”

  • Wide toe box. Allows toes to naturally spread out, improving balance, comfort, and the ability for muscles and bones in your foot to function as designed.  Reduces bunions. 
  • Zero drop.  No difference between heel height and toe height.  Allows natural alignment with the ground.
  • Thin, flexible sole. Allows bones, muscles, ligaments, and tendons in your foot to move and work as designed, increasing foot strength and flexibility over time.  Allows better feedback and body awareness.

*note – if you switch to barefoot shoes, give your feet time to get used to them before high running or training volume.

What’s your biggest shoe related question!?



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